Searchers are continuing to comb the Castaic Lake area for 19-year-old Laguna Niguel resident Bryce Laspisa while the Los Angeles County Coroner’s Office attempts to determine whether a body found burning nearby last week is that of the missing teen.
A passer-by found the body of a male on fire Wednesday morning along Lake Hughes Road about a mile from a boat access road where Laspisa’s overturned, abandoned Toyota Highlander was discovered Aug. 30.
Dental records are being used to help determine the identity of the badly burned remains, said Ed Winter, assistant chief of investigations for the Los Angeles County Coroner’s Office.
Karen Laspisa, Bryce’s mother, gave authorities her son’s dental records last week.
Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department homicide detectives have put a security hold on any additional information surrounding the case.
Since Friday, Sheriff’s Department divers have scoured Castaic Lake while deputies and volunteers on foot, on horseback and in all-terrain vehicles have searched the area.
The divers have searched along a half-mile of the lake’s shoreline, to a depth of 80 feet, said Deputy Johnie Jones, spokesman for the sheriff’s parks bureau.
Karen Laspisa said volunteers resumed the search Tuesday morning near Castaic Lake, but she declined to comment further. Two deputies on motorcycles also participated in the search, said Jones.
Bryce Laspisa left his girlfriend’s apartment in Chico around 11:30 p.m. Aug. 28 and began driving on I-5 toward Laguna Niguel, his mother has said. He ran out of gas in Kern County the next morning and received roadside assistance.
He was still in the area of the Buttonwillow rest area that evening when deputies, responding to a missing-person report from his parents, contacted him around 8 p.m.
He called his parents several hours later, around 2 a.m. Aug. 30, to say he was pulling off I-5 to sleep in his car in a residential area. They haven’t heard from him since.
By SCOTT SCHWEBKE / ORANGE COUNTY REGISTER
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